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MHG#41  -  ALARM IN THE MIDDLE EAST  -  AUGUST 2011  
 

 

MARANATHA!  THE MASTER IS COMING SOON!

 

Dear Friend,

Warm greetings in Y’shua’s exalted Name - the Name above all names.

      Perilous times are here,

      Filling men’s hearts with fear.

      Freedoms we all hold dear, now are at stake.

 

      The Coming of the Lord draws near.

      The countdown’s getting lower every day!

 

If Y’shua, Jesus, is our Saviour, we are not as those who are perishing - without hope. We have confident expectation, and therefore we can rejoice!

Now before we look around at what is going on, I want to encourage you with this passage from the apostle Peter. He writes about a “living hope.” And “hope” in the Bible is not “hope so.” It is a firm “confident expectation.”

“Praise be to the God and Father of our Master, Y’shua Messiah, who, by His great mercy, has caused us, through the resurrection of Y’shua the Messiah from the dead, to be born again into a living hope, into an inheritance which can never perish, or be corrupted, or fade away, that is kept safe in heaven for you, and for all who, through faith, are being protected by the power of El Shaddai, Almighty God until the coming of the deliverance that is ready to be revealed in the last time.

“In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, you have been distressed by various trials, that the proving of your faith - which is more precious than gold that perishes, though tested by fire - may be found to result in praise, glory and honour at the revelation of Y’shua the Messiah; and though you have not seen Him, you love Him; and while not seeing Him at present, yet believing in Him, you rejoice with joy inexpressible, and are filled with the Sh’khinah glory, obtaining the goal of your faith - the salvation of your souls.”  (1 Peter 1:3-9)

So dear believer, be encouraged, and filled with confidence expectation.

“Do not throw away your confidence which has a great reward; for you have need of endurance, so that when you have done the will of God, you may receive the promise. For in just a very little while, the One who is coming WILL COME, AND HE WILL NOT DELAY.” (Hebrews 10:35-37)

 In this issue I want to share and report on …

*  THE APOSTASY IN THE SO-CALLED CHURCH

*  CASES OF PERSECUTION AROUND THE WORLD

*  AN UPDATE ON THE MIDDLE EAST UPHEAVALS

*  IRAN’S RAPID NUCLEAR ADVANCE

*  THE PALESTINIAN U.N. INITIATIVE AND

*  THE INCREASING DANGERS CONFRONTING ISRAEL

*  PALESTINIANS AND ISRAEL BOTH PREPARE FOR WAR FOLLOWING THE UN VOTE IN SEPTEMBER

                                            May God bless you.  Your brother,   Don Stanton

___________________________________

 

CHRISTIANS, JEWS, MUSLIMS PLAN SHARED WORSHIP

 

“Let no one deceive you in any way, for that Day will not come unless the apostasy, (the predicted falling away from the faith), comes first.”  (2 Thessalonians 2:3)

Last May, religious and human rights activists were asking U.S. churches to invite Jewish and Muslim clergy in June, to their sanctuaries to read from sacred texts, in an initiative designed to counter anti-Muslim bigotry.

The June 26 initiative, called “Faith Shared: Uniting in Prayer and Understanding,” was co-sponsored by the Interfaith Alliance and Human Rights First. Leaders of the two Washington-based groups said the event hopes to demonstrate respect for Islam in the wake of Quran burnings in recent months.

“As a Christian minister who is a pastor in a local congregation, it is important to me for our nation and our world to know that not all Christians promote hate, attack religions different from their own, and seek to desecrate the scripture of others,” the Rev. Welton Gaddy, president of the Interfaith Alliance, said.

More than 50 churches in 26 states already have committed to the initiative, including the Washington National Cathedral.  - Pulpit pals

There is now a GROWING movement in the US and UK called CRISLAM (Christian-Islam).  This is not The Way!!

Reach out to Muslims with the Gospel, YES!

Join in an ungodly compromise, NO!!

“There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death.”  (Proverbs 14:12)

This next item is an example of this “ecumenical” amalgamation.

INTERFAITH  SERVICE  AT  ST. JOHN’S

On Sunday, May 22, at 10 a.m., the sounds of the adhan - the Muslim call to prayer - will ring out in St. John’s Episcopal Church Montclair, New Jersey, USA.

While there’s no minaret at the church, the words of “Allahu akbar,” (God is greater) will none-the-less invite both Christians and Muslims to worship side by side. During the interfaith service, verses from the Holy Quran will complement readings from the Holy Bible, including during Communion, embracing the traditions of both religions.

The Rector of St. John’s parish decided to have this service in order to demonstrate that both Islam and Christianity stem from Abrahamic roots, as well as to dispel negative stereotypes about the Muslim faith.

“I’ve grown concerned about the demonization of Muslims. I want Montclair to develop an understanding of the religion.” he stated. “We are trying to find ways to blend our community through religion. It’s hard, but we can accomplish it through this organic event and working together through outreach and other ministries of compassion.”

This interfaith service isn’t only trying to blend religions; it is also a way to invite the public to visit St. John’s Episcopal Church.

FAITH SHARED ACROSS AMERICA!

Sunday June 26th was not an ordinary Sunday in churches and places of worship all over the country.

Participating in a project of Interfaith Alliance and Human Rights First, called, Faith Shared: Uniting in Prayer and Understanding, dozens of houses of worship held interfaith services highlighting the shared values and common history of the three “Abrahamic faiths,” Christianity, Islam, and Judaism.

The project was very successful. Congregations in 34 States and the District of Columbia, and 70 congregations, participated from California to Iowa to the National Cathedral in Washington D.C.

In a time when inflammatory anti-Muslim rhetoric and outright bigotry are common and interfaith dialogue is not always as newsworthy, Faith Shared was an amazing opportunity to create an open and accepting conversation about religious differences and similarities both nationally and in local communities.  http://www.interfaithalliance.org/

THE DEAD AND DYING

UK: AGEING CHURCH OF ENGLAND ‘WILL BE DEAD IN 20 YEARS’

This is very sad, especially if we remember that great Anglican reformers died at the stake for the faith.

JULY 12/11. The average age of its members is now 61, and by 2020 a “crisis” of “natural wastage” will lead to their numbers falling “through the floor,” the Church’s national assembly was told.

In the past 40 years, the number of adult churchgoers has halved, while the number of children attending regular worship has declined by about 80 percent.

The Rev Dr Patrick Richmond, a Synod member from Norwich, told the meeting that some projections suggested that the Church would no longer be “functionally extant” in 20 years’ time.

Andreas Whittam Smith, the first Church Estates Commissioner, who leads the Church’s £5.3 billion investment fund, said the demographic “time bomb” for Anglicans should be seen as “a crisis”. “One of our problems may be that decline is so slow and imperceptible that we don’t really see it coming clearly enough,” he said.  - www.telegraph.co.uk

Many other churches are also dying. Many are dead already.  It’s the Church of Sardis in the 21st century.

Y’SHUA’S MESSAGE TO SARDIS

“And to the messenger of the assembly in Sardis write: He who has the seven Spirits of God, and the seven stars, declares these matters: ‘I know your works, that you have a name that you are alive, but you are dead.

Wake up, and strengthen the things that remain and are about to die; for I have not found your deeds completed before God. Remember, then what you have received and heard; and keep it, and repent. But if you will not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will have no idea as to the hour I will come upon you.

But you have a few people in Sardis who have not soiled their garments; and they will walk with Me dressed in white; for they are worthy. He who overcomes shall be clothed in white garments; and I will not erase his name from the Book of Life, but I will confess his name before My Father, and before His angelic messengers.’ He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the assemblies.’”   (Rev. 3:1-6)

 105,000 CHRISTIANS MARTYRED EACH YEAR

JUNE 2011. An international interfaith conference has revealed that 105,000 Christians are being killed every year simply because of their faith.

The shocking figures revealed at the “International Conference on Inter-religious dialogue between Christians, Jews and Muslims,” held in Hungary, show that one Christian is killed every five minutes somewhere in the world because of their faith.

These figures did not include the victims of civil wars, or wars between nations, but only the people put to death because they are Christians. 

NEPAL: Freedom of religion under threat

Five years ago Nepal abolished Hinduism as the state religion. Now it is working on a criminal code that would forbid a person of one faith to “convert a person, or abet him to change his religion.” No-one will be allowed to do anything or behave in any way that would cause a person to convert to a different religion. The proposal would also prohibit conversion by “offering inducements, or even without inducement.

Offenders could be imprisoned for 5 years and fined up to $700. If the offender is a foreigner, he will be deported from Nepal after paying the same penalties.

Let’s pray that this bill will fail in the parliament.

“Yahweh is mighty to save.”

(Zephaniah 3:17) 

 

    MIDDLE  EAST UPDATES

egypt: MUSLIM BROTHERHOOD NOW LEGAL PARTY    

JUNE 7/11. Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood’s political party, the Freedom and Justice Party, has been declared legal by Cairo. “The commission on party affairs has given its approval for the formation of the FJP.” 

The Muslim Brotherhood was officially illegal but mostly tolerated during the rule of President Hosni Mubarak. It was set up in 1928 and an official ban was imposed in 1954, over its suspected involvement in a series of political assassinations in the 1950s, including an attempt on the life of Egypt’s first republican president, Gamal Abdal Nasser.

As the best-organized political movement in Egypt, the Brotherhood announced on April 30 the formation of a “non-theocratic party” to contest up to half of parliament’s seats in the coming election.

A SUPER-COALITION OF 17 PARTIES

Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood has joined with 17 political parties to establish what they call a pro-democracy platform for parliamentary elections originally scheduled for September. The Muslim Brotherhood plans to compete for up to half the seats in the parliamentary vote.

YOUTH SPLIT FROM MUSLIM BROTHERHOOD

JULY 2/11. Islam Lotfy is a lawyer who specializes in human rights cases and is also a member of a Youth Coalition that is made up of young Egyptian revolutionaries of various ideologies.

Lotfy has been an active member of the Muslim Brotherhood. The young members of the coalition are united by a single goal: ensuring Egypt’s transition to a civil democratic state. More than four months after Mubarak was forced from office in mass uprisings that erupted on January 25, Lotfy and other young Muslim Brotherhood members say they are feeling increasingly alienated from the Islamist organization that shaped their political beliefs and influenced their behavior for most of their lives.

“We are not in agreement with all of the principles adopted by the older members of the group,” Lotfy acknowledged recently. “Our motives are different ... we have Egypt’s best interests at heart.”

Prior to the mass protests that swept across Egypt this year, it was rare to hear a younger member of the Muslim Brotherhood openly criticize the group’s  elders. Lotfy’s statements suggest a possible split in the ranks of Egypt’s most organized political movement.

Lotfy and at least 20 other young members of the Muslim Brotherhood have teamed up with other young activists espousing different ideologies to launch their own political party, “Egyptian Trend,” a move that risks their expulsion from the Islamist bloc.

The Brotherhood secretary general has said that any Muslim Brotherhood members who join competing political parties will be penalized. “Members of the Brotherhood are banned from joining any party except the Brotherhood’s own Justice and Freedom party.”

Lotfy said he regrets the move by Brotherhood leadership to ostracize him and insisted that the new party he has helped to establish will work toward fulfilling the goals of the revolution. Among its priorities will be ending corruption and social injustice, eradicating poverty and increasing civil liberties -demands made by opposition activists during 18 days of protest in Tahrir Square this year. 

http://edition.cnn.com/2011/WORLD/meast/06/30/egypt.muslim.brotherhood/index.html

RIOTS AND CLASHES CONTINUE

JULY 24/11.  Cairo has been rocked again this weekend by attacks on protestors who are demanding swifter action by the military. Dozens have been injured as supporters of the military attacked the protestors, and the military uses tear gas to disperse them.

ELECTION POSTPONED

After strident calls, the Egyptian Supreme Military Council has announced that the September vote will be postponed to October or November, to allow more time for new parties to get established.

PROPHECY: “In that day the Egyptians will become like women, and they will tremble and be in dread because of the waving of the hand of YHWH of Hosts, which He is going to wave over them. The land of Judah will become a terror to Egypt; everyone to whom it is mentioned will be in dread of it, because of the purpose of YHWH of Hosts which He is purposing against them.”  (Isaiah 19:16-17)

IRAN’S  RAPID  NUCLEAR  PROGRESS   

By CAROLINE GLICK

 

JUNE 17/12. While many developments in the Middle East are alarming, all of them pale in comparison to what is happening in Iran.

The Wall Street Journal editorialists summarized the major developments on this front. First, the UN’s International Atomic Energy Agency released previously classified sections of its latest report on Iran.

The report says that in the last six months, Tehran enriched 970 kilos of uranium to reactor-grade levels, bringing its publicly known stockpile of low enriched uranium to 4,105 kilos.

Iran also has enriched 56.7 kilos of uranium to the 20% level, from which it is a relatively simple matter to increase enrichment levels to the 90% needed to make a nuclear bomb.

Iran has also installed upgraded centrifuges in its until-recently secret enrichment facility at Qom.

Apparently owing to their certainty that Iran is an unstoppable nuclear power, the Iranian Revolutionary Guards let their guard down in a recent issue of their in-house journal. The magazine published an article describing the day after Iran performs a nuclear test.

And this month, also, Iran successfully launched a second spy satellite into space.

 The launch indicates that Iran is acquiring greater prowess in developing intercontinental ballistic missile capabilities. Such capabilities along with Iran’s nuclear program and global ambitions constitute a clear and present danger to Europe and the US.

It is inarguable that the policy of placing sanctions on Iran, favored by the US and Europe, has failed to damp-en Iran’s commitment to developing nuclear weapons. It has also failed to significantly slow Iran’s progress towards the atom bomb. Obviously, the only possible way to stop Iran from developing nuclear weapons at this late hour is to attack its nuclear installations.

For years, Israel’s governments have taken a back seat to Washington on Iran. Since Iran’s nuclear program was first revealed in 2003, Israel has allowed itself to believe that the US could be trusted to take the greatest threat to Israel’s survival off the table. The belief that the US would lead a military strike against Iran was always based more on blind faith than fact.

What this means is that – as was the case in May 1967, when the combined Arab armies gathered with the express purpose of wiping the Jewish state off the map – today again, Israel is alone at its hour of greatest peril. 

Source: http://www.carolineglick.com/e/2011/06/a-do-or-die-moment.php

IRAN HAS ENOUGH ENRICHED URANIUM FOR FOUR NUCLEAR BOMBS

JUNE 3/11.  By April 2011, Iran had accumulated a quantity of Uranium-235 that can be enriched in a short time to 90% (weapons grade); and that could fuel four nuclear bombs. And now Iran has attained the level of a “virtual” nuclear weapon state.  – DEBKAfile

IRAN REVEALS UNDERGROUND BALLISTIC MISSILE SILOS

JUNE 28/11. Iran has unveiled underground ballistic missile silos for the first time, in a warning to the world of its ability to protect its missiles and secretly store them in hidden locations throughout the country.

 

IRAN DEVELOPING BOMBS THAT CAN ALSO HIT THE U.S.

Elliott Chodoff, an American born political and military analyst and an IDF reserve major, spoke at the “Middle East Briefing” session of the sixth CUFI (Christians United for Israel) national summit in Washington in mid June.

Citing Israeli military intelligence, Chodoff was quite forthright in his analysis of a possible attack by Iran. “Israel cannot survive a nuclear attack. You cannot trust a nuclear deterrent. Israel cannot wipe out Iran’s nuclear arsenal, but the US can.” 

Chodoff added that the Iranian regime has been developing bombs that have the capability of hitting cities on the east coast of the US.  - A7 New York

 

BLAIR:  IRAN MUST NOT BE ALLOWED

TO DEVELOP NUKE PROGRAM

JUNE 21/11. Iran must not be allowed to develop its nuclear program, Quartet envoy Tony Blair said during a panel discussion as part of the three-day Israeli Presidential Conference in Jerusalem.

“If we allow Iran to develop nuclear capabilities, there will be consequences, therefore we must not let that happen,” Blair said. -  jpost.com

 

SCO SUMMIT IN CENTRAL ASIA

JUNE 15/11.  Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has met with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and other Central Asian and Far East Asian leaders at the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) summit held in the Kazakhstan capital of Astana. The SCO, formed in 2001, is widely seen as a rival to NATO.

Iran has ‘observer’ status in the SCO, but has requested full member status.

Ahmadinejad was given the floor at the summit, and delivered a blistering speech against the “slavers and colonizers” of the West, and called for a new world order.  “I believe together we can reform the way the world is managed,” he declared. “We can restore the tranquility of the world.”

He reportedly then addressed the leaders of Russia and Asia, asking: “Have any of us used an atomic bomb against the defenceless citizens of any other country?”

Ahmadinejad also met with Chinese President Hu Jin Tao who claimed that the strong relationship between China and Iran helps promote world peace and “is conducive to improving peace and stability in the region and the world.”

IRAN WOOS U.S. ALLIES AS

TROOPS WITHDRAW FROM AFGHANISTAN

JUNE 26/11. Iran is moving to cement ties with the leaders of three key American allies - Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iraq - highlighting Tehran’s efforts to take a greater role in the region as the U.S. military pulls out its troops.   - Wall Street Journal

SAUDI SUGGESTS ‘SQUEEZING’ IRAN

OVER NUCLEAR AMBITIONS

JUNE 22/11. Saudi Prince Turki al-Faisal warned that Riyadh could seek to supplant (upset) Iran’s oil exports if the country doesn’t constrain its nuclear program - a move that could hobble Tehran’s finances. 

“Iran is very vulnerable in the oil sector, and it is there that more could be done to squeeze the current government,” Prince Turki, a former Saudi ambassador to the US and UK, told a private gathering of American and British servicemen at RAF Molesworth airbase outside London.

The “Arab Spring” uprisings are intensifying the rivalry between Saudi Arabia and Iran, who face off across the Persian Gulf and jostle for influence with neighbours from Syria to Yemen.

It’s a Cold War, fueled by oil and ideology, between Shi’ite Islamists who rule Iran, and the Sunni Saudi royal family, each of whom consider themselves leaders of the world’s Muslim populations.

The prince is a former head of the Saudi intelligence agency, and Saudi Arabia’s monarchy often uses Prince Turki to float ideas concerning the country’s future policies.

Iran’s “meddling and destabilizing efforts in countries with Shi’ite majorities, such as Iraq and Bahrain, as well as those countries with significant Shi’ite communities … must come to an end,” Turki said.   

- The Wall Street Journal. http://www.worthynews.com/top/online-wsj-com-article-SB10001424052702304887904576400083811644642-html/

 

DANIEL’S PROPHECY     

“I saw the ram butting westward, northward, and southward, and no other beast could stand before him, and no-one could rescue from his power, but he did as he pleased, and magnified himself ... The ram which you saw with the two horns represents the kings of Media and Persia (Iran).” (Daniel 8:4, 20)

The vision of this prophecy in 551 BC, anticipated the conquest of Babylon by Darius and Cyrus twelve years later.  But the prophecy could be applied to the current president of Persia, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who is butting like a ram in all directions.

 

  PERSECUTION IN IRAN      

IRANIAN BELIEVER REMAINS IN CUSTODY DESPITE MAKING BAIL

JULY 7/11.  Farshid Fathi was in solitary confinement for months before he was told that he could be free on $200,000 bail. With great difficulty, his family came up with the cash after selling his father-in-law’s home, but when Fathi was ready to walk out of the prison, the chief interrogator from the Iranian public prosecutor’s office ordered him back for further questioning.

Using psychological torture, interrogators eventually forced Fathi to provide a list of all the individuals he evangelized, as well as any foreign contacts. According to the Iranian Criminal Code, prisoners awaiting trial are entitled to choose their own lawyers, but judiciary officials denied Fathi his right to legal advice.

Last year, in a series of organized raids, Iranian intelligence agents arrested Fathi along with hundreds of other Christians and home church members in Tehran and other cities. The agents informed their families that they were under arrest for apostasy, promoting Christianity and having contacts with foreign organizations.

Like Fathi, many imprisoned for Christ were placed in solitary confinement where they were subjected to intense and lengthy interrogations in section 209, the “political wing” of Evin prison. Fathi is 32 years old; he has a 7-year-old daughter named Rosana and a toddler named Barbod.

Iran’s continued persecution of religious minorities violates the principles of the “International Covenant on Civil and Political rights”; as a signatory to that covenant, Iran is legally and morally obligated to adhere to its standards for freedom and civil rights.        - Worthy News

“Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”    – Y’shua. (Matthew 5:10)

IRANIAN PASTOR SENTENCED TO DEATH 

In early July, it was reported that the case of Youcef Nadarkhani, an Iranian pastor sentenced to death for leaving Islam, was being returned to a lower Iranian court. In recent days it was learned that his lawyer has finally received the written confirmation of the ruling from the Supreme Court.

According to one source, the Supreme Court has agreed with the death sentence verdict. However, the court also found procedural flaws and asked the lower court to re-examine the case.

The judges are reportedly seeking clarification as to whether Pastor Youcef was truly a Muslim prior to becoming a Christian. If Pastor Youcef is determined to have been a “true” Muslim, and does not recant his Christian faith, the death sentence will stand. It is also feared that Pastor Youcef could be executed before the court re-examines the case.

Let’s pray for enduring faith for Pastor Youcef as he continues to face severe pressure to deny his Saviour. Pray that officials will repent of their unjust actions and allow Youcef to be exonerated and released.

Pray that all Iranian Christians imprisoned for their faith will be sustained by the love and presence of their Heavenly Father.

 “Do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you; definitely I will help you; I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.” (Isaiah 41:10)

For more about Iranians at great risk, visit www.persecution.net/iran.htm.

RIYADH WILL BUILD NUCLEAR WEAPONS IF IRAN GETS THEM

Saudi Prince Turki has strongly implied that Riyadh would be forced to develop  nuclear weapons if Tehran pushed ahead to develop them. He said Saudi Arabia is preparing to employ all of its economic, diplomatic and security assets to confront Tehran’s regional ambitions.

Diplomatic cables obtained by WikiLeaks and published by the Guardian last year revealed that King Abdullah, who has ruled Saudi Arabia since 2005, warned Washington in 2008 that if Iran developed nuclear weapons, “everyone in the region would do the same, including Saudi Arabia.”    - www.guardian.co.uk

LIBYA CAMPAIGN HAS GIVEN IRAN NUCLEAR FREE REIN

SAY what you will about the wisdom of NATO’s Libya bombing campaign, but its unintended consequences have seriously damaged US-led efforts to stymie Tehran’s nuclear ambitions. It has done so in three ways:

1. The Libya operation has distracted Western diplomacy from the Iran file, despite the fact that Iran’s nuclear program continues to advance unimpeded.

2. It has driven up Iranian oil sales and revenues, and crucially ...

3. It has driven down incentives for Iran to negotiate.

As the latest IAEA report shows, Iran has accumulated more than four tonnes (4000 kg) of low enriched uranium (enough for four small nuclear devices); it has successfully tested military components of nuclear weapons; and it continues to reduce the ability of IAEA inspectors to monitor its nuclear activities.

Sanctions imposed on Iran were meant to slow down its nuclear clock. But the Libyan crisis has eased up economic pressure by causing oil prices to soar. For Iran, this is a blessing. Iran’s budget is pegged to an $US 81.50 a barrel price tag.

Any oil price above that is a bonus for Iran. At time of writing, crude was hovering at about $US 114 a barrel.

The disruption of supply from Libya has had another unintended consequence; the increase of European oil dependence on Iranian crude.

Simply expecting the Iranian regime to change its behaviour is doomed to fail. Western leaders should be looking to change the regime itself.  The West has no option but to abandon compromise and go after Tehran’s rulers.

– extracts from an article by Emanuele Ottolenghi. www.thecommentator.com

LIBYA and SYRIA

The uprisings against both regimes continue.

A MESSAGE FOR MAHMOUD GADHAFI and BASHAR ASSAD

(and for all who are proud)

“The arrogance of your heart has deceived you! You who live in the clefts of the rock, whose habitat is high and lofty, you who say in your heart, ‘Who can bring me down to earth?’ Though you exalt yourself as high as the eagle, and though you make your nest among the stars, from there I will bring you down,” declares YHWH the LORD.” (Obadiah 4)

INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL COURT  ISSUES GADHAFI  AN  ARREST  WARRANT

JUNE 28/11. The International Criminal Court issued arrest warrants for Col. Moammar Gadhafi, his son and Libya’s intelligence director for crimes against humanity, triggering jubilation in rebel territory and formally marking the Libyan leader as an outlaw.

Gadhafi has lost control of more than half of Libya, but he is still hanging in there against the NATO and rebel assault on his cruel regime. Alas his days are numbered. He will be brought down.

IRAN WARNS TURKEY TO “BUTT OUT” OF SYRIA

JULY 25/11. Despite the brutal crackdown by the Assad government, the protests in Syria have the Iranian leadership worried. The survival of the Syrian dictator, Bashar Assad, is essential to the Islamic regime in Tehran because Syria provides the gateway to Iran’s expansion in the Middle East.

More than 1,500 opponents of the Assad regime have been killed. Thousands of fearful residents from northern Syria have taken refuge in Turkey; and Prime Minister Erdogan has denounced the Syrian slaughter.

One of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards’ media outlets has sternly warned Turkey against its stance on Syria, emphasizing that Iran stands squarely with the Assad regime. It warned that if Turkish officials continue on their present path, serious issues are sure to follow.

Earlier, Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei sent a letter to President Obama warning against any meddling in Syria. The Iranian officials also warned Turkey in recent weeks that should Turkey provide assistance to the US in helping the protesters in Syria, then all US and NATO bases in Turkey will become targets for the Iranian missiles.  -  Source: foxnews.com/opinion

PERSECUTION IN IRAQ

HOUSE CHURCH LEADER KIDNAPPED

A house church leader has been kidnapped by Muslims in Duhok, Iraq. A young Iraqi girl recently told contacts that Muslims broke into her home and took her father, Jamal, away. Pastor Jamal works among the Shabak people -- a people who have Jewish roots and speak Arabic and Kurdish. It is suspected the militants targeted him for helping lead many Muslims to Christ.

Several weeks ago, the home of one of Jamal’s recent converts was sprayed with machine gun fire. Many fear that the militants, possibly members of al Qaida, will not give Jamal any option of release, but will immediately kill him.

Throughout Iraq, Christians in environments of violence continue to face the agonizing choice of fleeing their homes or remaining in a climate of fear and pressure. Most Christians have left the country or have been forced to move from their hometowns due to attacks, and it is estimated that less than half of a million Christians remain. www.persecution.net/iraq

AFGHANISTAN: US BEGINS PULLOUT

JUNE 23/11.  Barack Obama acted against the advice of his top military adviser and senior commanders in choosing a faster, deeper withdrawal from Afghanistan. He has decided to withdraw 33,000 troops over the next 15 months – just in time to fulfil his promise (to with- draw troops from Afghanistan) before the presidential 2012 election.

Joel C. Rosenberg has made this comment:  “President Obama’s plan to precipitously start drawing down US military forces from Afghanistan before the war against Radical Islamic jihadists has truly been won -- and doing so against the advice of some of his field commanders -- is a serious mistake, misguided and dangerous. The move is a sign of White House fatigue.

It will be perceived by America’s enemies as weakness. It will embolden the enemy and put more Americans, Israelis and other Mideast allies of ours at greater risk.

We should be letting Gen. Petraeus and his team finish the job, and only then bring the troops home.  Certainly Iran’s political and religious leaders are not getting tired of preparing for their genocidal, apocalyptic war against the Judeo-Christian West.” - flashtrafficblog.wordpress.com

PERSECUTION IN AFGHANISTAN

Taliban Execute Man For Leaving Islam For Jesus Christ

The execution of an Afghan believer recently was a warning to Afghan Christians of “dire consequences” as American forces begin to leave Afghanistan

“If US troops are not in Afghanistan, the Taliban will come to power,” said Obaid S. Christ, an Afghan Christian exiled to India.  “We will have the same situation we had in the 1990s when the Russians left Afghanistan, when we had civil war and millions killed.” - Worthy News / July 2011

PERSECUTION IN LAOS  

LAO PASTORS LANGUISHING IN PRISON

Two Lao pastors arrested for holding a “secret meeting,” are languishing in prison due to the harsh conditions. In early January, officials arrested Pastor Wanna along with 10 other believers, for celebrating Christmas without prior approval.

Within days police had released nine of the detainees. Wanna, however, and another local pastor, Yohan, remain imprisoned.

Prison authorities have repeatedly told the men that they will be freed as soon as they sign documents renouncing their faith. After a recent visit, Wanna’s family members observed that he had lost weight, contracted an infection and seemed extremely weak. Both Wanna’s and Yohan’s families are also facing hardship, as the men were the principal providers for their families. Several of Wanna’s children have since left school to find work.

Pray that Wanna and Yohan will continue to draw on the Lord, knowing that He can equip them with the faith and hope they need to endure their chains. Ask God to comfort and provide for their families, and pray that the charges against them will be dropped and that they will be released. Pray that the Word of God will continue to be declared with clarity, boldness, love and power by all believers in Laos. - persecution.net/laos.htm

“How blessed is he who has the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is in YHWH his God … YHWH sets the prisoners free.” (Psalm 146:5, 7)

SOUTH SUDAN   

RECEIVES INDEPENDENCE CHRISTIANS REMAIN AT RISK

JULY 9/11.  Sudan and South Sudan officially have become separate nations -- a separation in accordance with a referendum held in January. The partition comes after a long history of violence and conflict, including two civil wars between the largely Islamic north and the Christian and animist majority in the south. Christians, in particular, have endured severe opposition.

Although many people, from Sudanese Christians to international leaders, have express-ed hope over the South’s independence, it is clear that the people on both sides of the new border continue to be at risk of violence and religious freedom violations.

In the months leading up to the partition, clashes erupted in several areas. Government agents and Islamic militants looted churches and killed Christians in regions of South Kordofan state.

There remain concerns that churches in North Sudan may face further restrictions on their freedom of worship if the government implements a strict form of Shariah, or Islamic, law.

With Christians continuing to flee to South Sudan, it is also feared that remaining believers in the north could be especially vulnerable to violence, pressure, and baseless accusations of defaming Islam.

Pray that Sudanese Christians will be examples of justice, peace and love as their nation navigates through this chapter of transition. Pray that the government of Sudan will listen to the concerns of the international community and recognize the importance of religious freedom. Pray that Christians in both Sudan and South Sudan will continue to entrust themselves to Christ knowing Jesus is the ruler over the kings of the earth. (2 Timothy 1:7-12, Revelation 1:5)

For more on the trials facing Sudanese believers, go to www.persecution.net/sudan.htm.

THE PALESTINIAN INITIATIVE

IRAN, the Palestinians, and the most radical Arab nations are convinced that Israel is soon to be wiped out. The Jewish state is being surrounded and threatened by hostile and determined military forces, and scores of nations are seeking to force it back to indefensible borders.

Renewed Israel-Palestinian negotiations have been rendered virtually impossible because of Hamas’ participation in the Palestinian government. Hamas is adamant; it will not – never ever - recognise Israel.

Having failed to gain its objectives, the Palestinian Authority is now seeking to gain statehood by appealing to the United Nations for recognition next month - September. This is the big topic right now.

The developing situation is loaded with big trouble.

The Palestinian demand is a state based on the 1949 armistice lines, with a capital in East Jerusalem. If support in the UN Security Council fails, the Palestinians will seek a vote in the General Assembly, where about 116 nations are expected to support its unilateral independence.

When the motion comes up before the Security Council, President Obama will feel compelled to veto - as supporting an anti-Israel resolution would threaten his own chances of success in the upcoming 2012 presidential elections.

But as Obama wants to avoid being placed in that delicate position, he has sent envoys to prep both Netanyahu and Abbas to urge them to participate in closed-door, 3-way talks without prior conditions, in Washington. Obama has hoped such talks will put paid to the Palestinian UN initiative.

The White House and European leaders have been pressing Benjamin Netanyahu to publicly adopt Obama’s view that Israel’s pre-1967 border should be the basis for future peace talks. 

But last minute talks before the September UN vote now seem a pipe dream. Nevertheless Obama will keep on pressing for talks, even after the UN vote, hoping they will be kept afloat well into 2012 so that his “peace initiative” will give his re-election bid a boost.

Binyamin Netanyahu, although he refuses to talk with Hamas, says he is willing for new talks with everything on the table for negotiation.

Jerusalem Post reports that Mahmoud Abbas is saying that the UN initiative will not affect peace talks.  UN recognition, he says, will give the Palestinians the status to negotiate from a position of equality.

Referring to the current deadlock that has prevented negotiations, Abbas listed borders and security as the two major sticking points. Above all, however, was the status of Jerusalem, an issue about which Abbas appeared intractable. “If Jerusalem will not be the capital of Palestine,” he said, “there will be no state at all.” 

 

FATAH-HAMAS UNITY GOVERNMENT IN LIMBO

MAHMOUD ABBAS   ISMAIL HANIYEH  SALAM FAYYAD

                                    The forming of a new government is one of the clauses in the unity pact signed by Hamas and Fatah on May 4.  However, the talks have reportedly stalled on the issue of who will be the Prime Minister to head the transitional government.

Abbas has been championing for his current PM, Salam Fayyad, to continue in the role in the interim government. Hamas, however, has rejected Fayyad, saying his views are too “moderate.”  Earlier, Hamas proposed the current PM in Gaza, Ismail Haniyeh for the position. 

Haniyeh himself said: “This is a sign of the seriousness of the discussions on the make-up of the government and who will head it.”

Later, Haniyeh confirmed that Hamas’ preferred candidate for the prime minister post was Jamal al-Khudari, a prominent businessman from the Gaza Strip.  

Recent reports suggested that Abbas himself would hold the post of Prime Minister, and that Fayyad and Haniyeh would be his deputies, with Fayyad also assuming the role of Minister of Finance. PA officials previously announced the transitional government would be made up entirely of independent figures.

Israeli analysts have been highly skeptical of a Fatah-Hamas unity government’s long term viability, saying the divisions between the rival factions may prove too stark to overcome.

JUNE 23/11.  A PA official claimed that Hamas is sabotaging reconciliation at the behest of the Iranians.

On the other hand, Hamas leaders say Abbas has succumbed to US-Israeli pressure (to suspend financial aid to the Palestinians if the agreement is implemented), and that he is backtracking on the Egyptian-sponsored reconciliation agreement which was announced in Cairo.

The PA, in response, said that Iran, which supports Hamas financially, has instructed the movement to pull out of the agreement with Fatah. “Hamas is nothing but a tool in the hands of Iran,” a PA official said. “There can be no agreement with a movement that serves the agenda of a regime like Iran, which is a threat to Arab national security.”

“The honeymoon between Fatah and Hamas seems to have ended very quickly,” remarked a Fatah official in Ramallah. “The gap between the two parties remains very wide on most issues.” - Jerusalem Post

ABBAS SAYS NO TURNING BACK FROM UNITY EFFORTS

JUNE 24/11. After visiting Turkey for talks with PM Erdogan, Mahmoud Abbas vowed to press ahead with efforts for a unity government, as disagreements with Hamas continue to snag the process.

“We are continuing on the path of reconciliation and there will be no turning back,” Abbas said. “We will make all efforts possible until the unity of our nation is achieved and a transitional government is established,” he told reporters.

On the day Abbas arrived in the Turkish capital, Hamas leader, Khalid Meshaal was also in Turkey holding talks with the Foreign Minister on ways to overcome disagreements with Fatah.

Turkey informed Abbas that Hamas adamantly refused to accept Fayyad’s reappointment as PM. But that Hamas would accept “any other official the president proposes, just not Salam Fayyad.”

Turkey has sought to mediate in efforts to reconcile Fatah and Hamas, and Erdogan offered “all support” to secure Palestinian unity. He also promised to “resolutely” support a Palestinian bid for membership in the United Nations.   –AFP/ www.news.yahoo.com

TURKEY THREATENS HARDER LINE ON ISRAEL

In June there seemed to be a thaw in the cold Israel- Turkey relations. Secret talks going on with American encouragement in an attempt to restore normal relations.

And Netanyahu sent a congratulatory message to Erdogan on his recent re-election, and was quoted as saying: “My government will be happy to work with the new Turkish government on finding a resolution to all outstanding issues between our countries.”

But Turkey has demanded that Israel apologise for the deadly raid on the Marmara flotilla last year.

The Israeli government has to date failed to either say sorry or compensate families of the nine activists who were killed in May last year in the commando raid on the Mavi Marmara, a Turkish-owned ferry.

If Israel fails to apologise, Turkey threatens to resort to Plan B, which could include bringing legal action against the Israeli commandos who took part in the raid; downgrading relations with Israel; taking a strong pro-Palestinian stance, and voting against Israel in the UN.

Israeli Infrastructures Minister Uzi Landau rejected outright the Turkish demand that Israel apologize for killing nine Turkish citizens in the 2010 incident. “If anyone should apologize, it’s Turkey for standing behind the provocative flotilla,” he said. “It’s Turkey that needs to explain its connections with Hamas and other extremist Muslim groups. It’s Turkey that needs to explain its policy, not only to us but to the entire world.

“Enough with these Israeli apologies,” added Landau. “If we apologize we will be presented as the ones responsible for what happened and we will be humiliated.”

 

MUSLIM STATES CALL ON HAMAS TO

RECOGNIZE QUARTET TERMS

JUNE 20/11. The Parliamentary Assembly of the Mediterranean (PAM) called on Hamas to accept the Quartet’s three conditions for recognizing the Islamist movement – renunciation of violence, recognition of Israel and acceptance of the agreements signed in the past by Israel and the PLO.

Deputy Knesset Speaker MK Majallie Whbee (Kadima) said that all of the countries attending the meeting in Croatia, including Egypt, Morocco, Tunisia and Algeria, as well as the Palestinian Authority, voted in favor of the resolution. The assembly, which has 23 member-states and aims to foster cooperation among Mediterranean countries, also called for a return to Israeli-Palestinian negotiations and an end to the conflict.  But Hamas remain resolute …

HAMAS LEADER CALLS FOR PRAYER FOR AN END TO ISRAEL

MAY 16/11. Hamas PM Ismail Haniyeh spoke to Muslim worshipers, telling them to pray for an end to Israel. “Palestinians mark the Nakba Day with great hope of bringing to an end the Zionist project in Palestine,” Haniyeh told 10,000 people at Gaza City’s al-Omari mosque. -  AP 

MAHMOUD ZAHAR    

HAMAS LOOKS FORWARD TO “THE GREAT MASSACRE” OF JEWS

Hamas’ foreign minister Mahmoud Zahar said, “As a matter of principle, Hamas will never relinquish a single inch of the Palestinian land.” “In just a few years, all the Zionists and the settlers will realize that their arrival in Palestine was for the purpose of the great massacre, by means of which Allah wants to relieve humanity of their evil.”

Zahar has used a recent interview to clarify the ideological difference between the Gaza-based Islamist party, and Fatah. According to the translation from Memri, Zahar stated during his 23 June appearance on the Hamas-affiliated Al-Aqsa TV that:

“The difference between [Hamas and Fatah] is that we will not give up a single inch. We say that we should establish a state on any piece of the land, but without relinquishing a single inch. That’s it, in a nutshell. That’s the difference between us and them.

“They want to establish a state within the 1967 borders, with certain land swaps, and to forget about 78% of the Palestinian land of the past. We say that we should establish a state on any piece of the land – not necessarily [just the entire] 1967 territories, but any inch of land – but without giving up a single inch of the land.”

The clear message is that, while Fatah might be willing to accept two states as a resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Hamas would only ever view the establishment of a Palestinian state alongside Israel as an interim solution – the claim to the whole of Israel would continue.  - From The Wire / June 30/11

    THE RAFAH GAZA CROSSING    

In May, Egypt opened the Rafah crossing into Gaza. This led to Israeli concerns that the crossing will be exploited by terrorists seeking to smuggle weapons into Gaza, along with continued activity through the smuggling tunnels. After opening the border, Egypt caught two arms smugglers, despite its touted ‘security arrangements.’

Four days after the much-heralded opening of the Rafah crossing, Cairo virtually shut it down again in response to a US warning that since the crossing’s opening, Palestinian and al Qaeda terrorists had been roaming at large across Sinai, exposing the Suez Canal to attack. Hamas was furious at the closure.

An Israeli defense official, Amos Gilead, visited Cairo to discuss security coordination with Egyptian officials, including intelligence minister Murad Muwafi, who briefed him on the new security measures at the Rafah border crossing.

And so the Rafah crossing was re-opened.

Gaza has abundant supplies, and recently a huge modern supermarket was opened. Gaza is much more prosperous than the West Bank, and many Arab cities.

Hamas has smuggled in a huge number of missiles and weapons.  But it would like the Gaza coast to be open to shipping, so that any amount of heavy weapons could be brought in. The coast is still blockaded.

 

LIBYAN ARMS FLOW TO GAZA

 

Israeli defence experts are concerned that a ‘large quantity’ of weapons has flowed from Libyan strongman Muammar Qaddafi’s arsenal to terrorist arms dealers, due to a loosening of the dictator’s grip on his government.

The defence experts believe hundreds of 120-122mm Grad missiles, which can reach ranges of 60-70 miles are now in Hamas hands. Such missiles could easily threaten Ber Sheva, Jerusalem, and Tel Aviv.

It is also believed shorter-range 60 mm rockets, and stores of guns and ammunition, were smuggled from Libya to Gaza. In addition, Israel now believes surplus Russian anti-tank missiles from Libyan stores may be smuggled to Hamas from Sinai.

 

 

THE  QUARTET   -  *U.S.  *U.N.  *EU  *RUSSIA

ASHTON’S MIDDLE EAST INITIATIVE   

EU foreign affairs chief, Catherine Ashton, launched a bold initiative to avert a potentially explosive dispute at the UN in September. She said the Quartet should hold a high-level meeting before the summer which spells out that Israel must pull back to its 1967 borders, in return for security guarantees from the Palestinians.

The move was designed to give “Palestine” an incentive to put aside its plans to seek full UN recognition in September - a move which could split the EU into pro-Israeli and pro-Palestinian camps, and also damage EU-US relations.

In July, the Quartet met in Washington, and came to a dead end.  No statement was made except for, “more work is needed!”

QUARTET SUPPORTS OBAMA’S POSITION

Earlier, the Middle East Quartet issued a statement in support of President Obama’s vision of Israeli-Palestinian peace. The European Union had already agreed with Obama’s proposal of Israel retreating to its pre-6-day-war borders. Catherine Ashton, the High Representative of the EU for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, said she would “warmly welcome”  Israel’s return to the 1967 borders.

According to the statement issued by the Quartet -“moving forward on the basis of territory and security” is the foundation for solving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Russia also confirmed its support of Israel’s reverting to its 1967 borders. 

EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT:    

“EAST JERUSALEM SHOULD BE PALESTINIAN CAPITAL”

 

JUNE 15/11. In a speech before the Israel’s Knesset, European Parliament President Jerzy Buzek said he backs Obama’s peace plan, and that negotiations are the ‘only solution.’  “The European Parliament supports the creation of a Palestinian state within the 1967 borders with agreed land swaps,” he said.

But in Ramallah, he said the European parliament opposed Palestinian plans to seek UN recognition in September of their state in the West Bank and Gaza, without negotiating this with Israel.

Germany and Italy joined the US to pressure the Palestinians to put off the UN vote, and Israel to take steps that would help persuade them to do so.

“Israel has a fundamental right to exist,” Buzek said, but he backed the Palestinians on the issue of Jerusalem, explicitly saying East Jerusalem should become the capital of their state.  – www.haaretz.com

NETANYAHU REJECTS 1967 BORDERS

Israeli PM, Binyamin Netanyahu, has rejected Obama’s proposition that Israel revert to its 1967 boundaries, saying this would make his country indefensible.

Speaking directly on the real issue - the UN resolution - Netanyahu pointed out that UN support for unilateral independence for “Palestine,” would be counter-productive.

“First, it would violate the agreements between the Palestinians and Israel, but it would also harden the Palestinian position because if the UN General Assembly adopts the Palestinian positions in advance of negotiations, why should they negotiate?” Netanyahu said. “Peace will only come from negotiations. It will be a negotiated peace. It cannot be imposed from the outside, not by any power and certainly not by one-sided UN resolutions.”

LIEBERMAN:

“OSLO ACCORD VOID IF PA DECLARES STATE”

Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman told Catherine Ashton that a Unilateral Declaration of Statehood (UDS) by the Palestinian Authority, would nullify the 1993 Oslo Accords, which stipulate a bilateral framework and proscribe unilateral moves, and serve as the basis for economic, infrastructure, and security cooperation between Israel and the PA.

“A move like that (UDS) will be a violation of all the agreements that were signed until today. Israel will no longer be committed to the agreements signed with the Palestinians in the past 18 years,” Lieberman said.

The nullification of the Oslo Accords would, in all likelihood, render a PA state unviable and ultimately force Israel to assert jurisdiction in areas currently administered by the PA

OBAMA’S VACILATION (flip-flop)

In May, Obama declared, “Israel should not be expected to enter into peace talks right now.  Israel could not be expected to negotiate with Hamas if it did not even recognize Israel’s right to exist.”

Later Obama said, “We will continue to demand that Hamas accept the basic responsibilities of peace, including recognizing Israel’s right to exist and rejecting violence and adhering to all existing agreements.”

Now the Obama Administration appears to be pressuring Israel to sit down with people who won’t hold to past agreements and recognize Israel’s right to exist. The President is in fact handing the Palestinians a huge gift by making the 1967 borders the beginning ground for negotiations on the weak argument that it’s necessary in order to stop the UN from declaring a Palestinian state this fall.    - Chuck Missler

JOHN BOLTON TAKES ON UN, AND OBAMA

JULY 21/11. Former US Ambassador to the United Nations, John Bolton, urged American citizens this week to “take back the government and assert leadership.”

Speaking at the 6th annual Christians United for Israel (CUFI) national summit in Washington DC, Bolton said, “the most powerful force on earth is not nuclear weapons, but an aroused American public.

Bolton had strong words for the UN in a broad-based foreign policy speech on the September General Assembly vote, in which the Palestinian Authority will ask the membership to approve its establishment as an independent nation.

“This effort is an attack on Israel’s legitimacy,” said Bolton adding that it comes as no surprise because, “for the last two and half years, President Obama has been negotiating on behalf of the Palestinians.”

Supporting Israel’s right to live in “peace and security,” Bolton said that the solution to the seemingly intractable Israeli-Palestinian conflict must be resolved by the “parties of conflict” and not by the machinations of the UN. He called on the US Congress to “pass a law taking the wind out of the Palestinian sails.”

Bolton also urged Congress to “get Obama to be an honest broker in Middle East peace negotiations and get his foot off the pedal of the Palestinians.”

Bolton told his audience of more than 600 that the intended vote reflects a repudiation of U.S. foreign policy and is direct contravention of UN resolutions 242 and 338.

Bolton recommended the US warn the European Union that if the EU decides to adopt this “profoundly wrong” resolution, the U.S. will yank its funding for the UN. 

In 1988, former Secretary of State James Baker threatened to cut funds to any UN agency that funded the PLO, Bolton added.  - Arutz Sheva / July 22/11

Binyamin Netanyahu spoke at the same CUFI summit via video link. Drawing the largest applause was in response to his reference to the biblical connection of the Jewish people to their ancestral homeland.

“The Jewish people are not occupiers in the land of Israel,” he said. “We have returned to the land of our forebears; of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, David and Solomon and we are here to stay.

Speaking of Israel as America’s only reliable ally in the Middle East, Netanyahu underscored Israel’s initiatives at the peace table. This conflict is not about Israel refusing to accept a Palestinian state. Israel wants peace with the Palestinians, but we can’t build a peace based on lies.”

SENATORS CHALLENGE OBAMA

ON FOREIGN POLICY ON ISRAEL

JUNE 15/11. In his policy speech at the State Department on May 19, President Obama said, “We believe the borders of Israel and Palestine should be based on the 1967 lines with mutually agreed swaps, so that secure and recognized borders are established for both states.”

Several US senators have decided to challenge President Barack Obama’s policy towards Israel by introducing a resolution that opposes any Israeli withdrawal to the indefensible 1949 armistice lines.

The resolution was introduced by Republican Senator Orrin Hatch and independent Senator Joe Lieberman. “It is contrary to US policy and our national security, to have the borders of Israel return to the armistice lines that existed on June 4, 1967,” the resolution states.

The resolution then mentions the UN Security Council Resolution 242 of 1967 which recognized Israel’s “right to live in peace within secure and recognized boundaries free from threats or acts of force,” and acknowledges that “the US has long recognized that a return to the 1967 lines would create a strategic military vulnerability for Israel and greatly impede its sovereign right to defend its borders.”

Republican Party members were quick to criticize Obama for his statements.  Mitt Romney (a friend of Israel who recently declared his candidacy for president in 2012) said Obama had “thrown Israel under the bus” and “disrespected Israel and undermined its ability to negotiate peace. He has also violated a first principle of American foreign policy, which is to stand firm by our friends.”   -  Arutz Sheva

US CONGRESS OPPOSES PA STATEHOOD BID

The US House of Representatives voted 407-6 to pass a non-binding resolution, backing the suspension of funds to the cash-strapped Palestinian Authority, should it pursue its bid for a unilateral declaration of statehood by the United Nations in September.

The resolution comes a week after the US Senate unanimously approved a similar resolution.

The House resolution also calls for the Obama administration to consider suspending aid to the PA in light of its unity deal with Hamas terror organization. The resolution is non-binding because, constitutionally, foreign policy is the purview of the President.

“US CAN STOP INITIATIVE BY HALTING FUNDS FOR UN”

The UN is slated to discuss in September the Arab League motion to recognize the Palestinian Authority with borders based on the temporary 1949 Armistice Lines that defined Israel’s territory.

John Bolton, former American Ambassador to the UN, noted that although UN recognition of the PA does not mean it would have membership in the UN, “It would nonetheless be a major Palestinian success.”

Writing in The Wall Street Journal in June, Bolton said a Congressional law that would stop funding for the UN if it recognizes the Palestinian Authority as a state would stop the plan in its tracks.  However, he dismissed the possibility that US President Barack Obama would take such action on his own.

As far back as 1988, the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) issued a “declaration of statehood” and changed the name of its observer delegation to the United Nations from the PLO to Palestine.

He noted that at the time, Secretary of State James Baker warned publicly, “I will recommend to the President that the US make no further contributions, voluntary or assessed, to any international organization which makes any changes in the PLO’s status as an observer organization.”

Mr Bolton said, the US Congress “has a rich history of dealing with UN actions it doesn’t appreciate. Rather than wait for a Baker-like threat, Congress should legislate broadly that any UN action that purports to acknowledge or authorize (unilateral) Palestinian statehood will result in a cutoff of all US contributions to the offending agency.  Reducing US funding would present the UN membership with a fascinating question: Would they rather recognize Palestinian statehood, or keep America’s money?

CALL TO CUT US FUNDING TO UN

IF IT APPROVES PA STATE

JUNE 9/11. Congressman Steve Chabot, the chairman of the US House Foreign Affairs Middle East subcommittee has introduced a non-binding resolution in the US House of Representatives, to cut US funding to the UN if it unilaterally approves a PA state.

Chabot’s measure has not yet garnered co-sponsors, but Chabot says he expects a “significant number” of his colleagues to support it when Congress returns to session next week.

Jonathan S. Tobin, editor of Commentary Magazine, wrote this week a strong endorsement of the resolution – but added that it should be merely “the first shot” fired in the struggle to ensure that the UN does not approve the controversial PA state.

“Congress should also be focusing on the fact that by signing a unity pact with the Hamas terrorists, the Palestinian Authority has rendered itself ineligible for the hundreds of millions of U.S. taxpayer dollars that it continues to receive.”

WAR MAY FOLLOW VOTE ON PALESTINIAN STATE

Israel is preparing for war. The belief is that once the UN vote on a unilateral declaration of a Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as its capital city takes place, war will break out. Israel is preparing to be attacked by its neighbours — not only the Palestinian terrorists of Hamas and Fatah, but also by Hizb’ollah armed and funded by Syria and Lebanon, and perhaps even by troops from Egypt, Syria, Lebanon and Iran as well.

Support expressed by the Arab League for UN recognition of Palestine poses a grave risk because of the leverage of the oil nations over Europe. Europe imports most of its oil, and the vast oil wealth of the Arab Gulf states is coveted by the EU to help them survive their current financial crisis.

The threat Israel faces is not just a meaningless UN vote; it is a life and death struggle for survival ... and Israel’s enemies are focused and fully committed to their evil plan.

“O God, do not keep silent! Do not be quiet, and do not be still, O God! For look, Your enemies are roaring; and those who hate You have raised their heads. They craftily plot against Your people, and conspire against Your hidden, treasured ones.

“They have said, ‘Come, and let us destroy them as a nation, that the name of Israel may be remembered no more.’ For they have conspired together with one mind; they make a pact against You.”  (Psalm 83:1-5)

BARGHOUTI

URGES PALESTINIAN MARCH TO BACK U.N. BID 

JULY 20/11. Jailed terrorist leader calls on Palestinians “to go out in a peaceful, million-man march during the week of voting in September.”

RAMALLAH. Jailed Tanzim-Fatah leader Marwan Barghouti has called on Palestinians to stage mass rallies in support of the diplomatic bid to gain UN membership for a Palestinian state.

Barghouti, a figure widely respected among many Palestinians, said taking the statehood quest to the United Nations was part of a new strategy that would open the door to “peaceful, popular resistance.”

“I call on our people in the homeland and in the diaspora to go out in a peaceful, million-man march during the week of voting in the UN in September,” Barghouti said in a statement written from his jail cell in Israel.

Barghouti is serving five life terms in prison for his role in terrorist attacks on Israelis during the second intifada. He is also thought to be the mastermind of the first intifada.   - Reuters

ISRAEL’S UN AMBASSADOR TELLS AMERICAN JEWS:

“PREPARE FOR SEPTEMBER VOTE”

JUNE 20/11. Israel’s new ambassador to the UN, Ron Prosor, urged Jewish American leaders to form a clear and operational plan ahead of the UN’s vote in September regarding unilateral recognition of a Palestinian state.

Prosor said that talk was not enough at such a crucial time, and that the US Jewish community must prepare a clear operational plan to stop the upcoming UN vote.

He urged the Jewish leaders to work together despite their differences ahead of the UN vote.

Prosor also said that regardless of the outcome of the UN vote, a Palestinian state will not be created and added that the UN is not authorized to dictate borders between countries.

He stressed that a unilateral recognition of a Palestinian state will bring about another cycle of violence that will only lead to another dead end.

“The mission regarding the unilateral declaration is one great challenge, but I believe the chances of the declaration to succeed are actually very small. It will only bring things back and take nothing forward. Unilateral moves are not constructive,” he said.

- www.haaretz.com

IDF PREPARING IN ANTICIPATION OF SEPTEMBER UN VOTE

JULY 22/11. As the Palestinians move forward with their plans to unilaterally declare statehood, the army has decided to procure new non-lethal weapons that will help disperse large demonstrations and marches that could break out in the West Bank and along Israel’s borders in the North.

The new equipment is in addition to other riot gear the IDF has purchased ahead of September including tear gas, rubber bullets and protective equipment.

The military is also buying new technological systems such as the “Scream,” a device that emits penetrating bursts of sound that leave rioters dizzy and nauseated, as well as the “Skunk Bomb,” which contains a foul-smelling liquid to be sprayed on rioters.

“The possibility of large demonstrations after September is at the forefront of the military’s activities these days,” one officer said this week. “The entire military is focused on it.”

 

PALESTINIANS USING STATEHOOD PUSH

TO SET STAGE FOR WAR WITH ISRAEL

According to a report by leading Israeli analyst Pinhas Inbari, the Palestinian Authority plans to use international backing to legitimize a new conflict with Israel.

The Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs also asserted that the PA, in cooperation with Hamas, hopes that a UN resolution for a Palestinian state in the West Bank and Gaza Strip would set the stage for war with Israel in late 2011 - a third intifada.”

“What the Palestinians really envisage after September is to exploit a UN endorsement of statehood to legitimize an escalation of the conflict,” said the report entitled, “What Are the Palestinians Planning after September?”

“After having the 1967 lines recognized so as to negate the results of the Six-Day War, they plan to seek recognition of the 1947 partition lines.”

Inbari, a senior policy analyst at the Jerusalem Center, said the PA was preparing for a renewal of hostilities with Israel around September, when the UN considers a resolution for Palestinian statehood. One scenario was that PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas resigns and the PA dissolves to pave the way for an insurgency war.

“The Palestinians do not want to declare a state, but, rather, to leave the conflict open,” the report said. “What the Palestinians plan to do then is not to exercise statehood but to declare themselves a ‘state under occupation’ in order to legitimize the escalation of the struggle.”

The report quoted Fatah leader Hatem Abdul Khader as saying that Abbas was prepared to resign should Israel refuse to allow a Palestinian state in the West Bank and Jerusalem in 2011. Abdul Khader said Abbas’s replacement would abolish all agreements with Israel and “lead the Palestinians back to the struggle.”   www.worldtribune.com

Amidst all the bad news, there is one good report …

WITNESSING HISTORY IN THE MAKING!  

500 PEOPLE RESPOND TO Y’SHUA IN TEL AVIV

Over 700 people attended a 2-day conference. Most of them non-believers and many of the guests at the conference were an older generation, holocaust survivors and many other Israelis. For most of them it was the first time they had ever heard the gospel of a Jewish Messiah preached to them. Their response was overwhelming!

On the first night more than 300 people responded to the altar call, coming forward to receive Yeshua as their Messiah! The second night 200 people also gave their lives to Yeshua. It has exceeded all our expectations! We have never seen such a large number of people in Israel responding like this to the message of Yeshua.

“This is what the Sovereign YHWH says: ‘My people, I am going to open your graves and bring you up from them; I will bring you back to the land of Israel. Then you, my people, will know that I am the YHWH, when I open your graves and bring you up from them. I will put my Spirit in you and you will live...”            (Ezekiel 37:.12-14)

AMEN.  HALLELUYAH.  PRAISE THE LORD! 

 

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